Last weekend I decided to make chocolate cupcakes with a cream cheese frosting. These cupcakes have a mocha flavor with a dense texture. What I really had fun doing was icing these cupcakes. I bought a new pastry bag, the one I had before was a reusable bag that was not only a pain to clean (Duane asked me how would I know about cleaning the bag…. thank you sweetie!), but the tips would come off with slightest bit of pressure. My suggestion; use disposable bags.
With the texture of the cake and the weight of the cream cheese, I thought these cupcakes would be better as a cake. I found it much easier to eat with a fork. The frosting has a strong cream cheese taste, so if you really like cream cheese, you’ll love this frosting.
Chocolate Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons cake flour
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- teaspoon instant espresso powder (I used Cafe Bustelo)
- 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons freshly brewed espresso (Cafe Bustelo)
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
- 2 1/2 oz bittersweet chocolate, 60% Cacao (I used Ghiradelli), melted and slightly cooled
- CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
- 2 8oz packages of low fat cream cheese.
- 1/2 cup (1 stick)
- 2 1/2 cups confectioner sugar (or to taste)
- 1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- Line standard muffin tray with liners. Pre-heat oven 350 degrees. Brew espresso. (1/4 cup)
- While the espresso is brewing; in a large bowl sift cocoa 3 times. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; whisk to well combine. Set aside.
- Dissolve the teaspoon of espresso powder into the brewed espresso, set-aside.
- Using the double boiler method (a heat safe bowl sitting on top of a sauce pan with just enough water to fill to cover the bottom, see picture above) melt chocolate. Slightly cool.
- Beat butter on medium-high speed until creamy. Add the sugar, dark brown sugar and eggs; beat on medium-high speed, scraping down sides and bottom of bowl as needed, until fluffy.
- Reduce mixer speed to low. Add flour mixture in three additions,alternating the low fat buttermilk. You will start and end with flour. Beat after each addition until combined.
- Add espresso mixture, melted chocolate and vanilla; beat on low speed until smooth.
- Divide batter evenly between lined muffin cups, filling each three-quarters full.
- Bake for 16-17 minutes or until cake tester comes out with only a few moist crumbs.
- Transfer tin to wire rack; allow cupcakes to cool completely in tin before removing.
- Cupcakes can be stored, un-frosted, at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to two months.
- In a bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy.
- Mix in the vanilla, then gradually mix in the confectioners’ sugar, then beat on medium speed until creamy.
- Using a spatula, fill pastry bag fitted with the star tip and pipe on to cupcakes.